Woodlot preservation is a divisive topic these days. Chatham-Kent Council approved a motion last Monday evening, enacting a bylaw aimed at preventing clear cutting - for the next 120 days at the very least. An axe falls, and the rural-urban divide rises again.
Agriculture is without doubt the bedrock of our local economy. When people ask about the changes within our own profession, I often draw the comparison to family farms. Hundred-acre farms have given way to thousands, in much the same manner as Funeral Homes in small communities have come together under one umbrella; to ensure the future of these gathering places. Often, one family has become the torchbearer for several. We are both involved in planting too – a cheeky observation shared in the Funeral Home lobby a few too many times.
Chatham-Kent has one of the lowest percentages of tree cover in all of Ontario. It is concerning. Stewardship is challenging and as local headlines reaffirm, a charged issue. My encouragement to all is to support the reforestation efforts undertaken by the Lower Thames Valley Conservation Authority. Seven Memorial Forests have been established under their purview.
With little cluttering our calendars these days, consider exploring one of the forests below or make a donation to further their growth:
Big Bend Memorial Forest at Big Bend Conservation Area, near Wardsville
Badder & Robinson Memorial Forest at the Mosa Forest, near Bothwell
Sharon Creek Memorial Forest at Sharon Creek Conservation, near Delaware
McKinlay Woodlands ... A Living Memorial at the C. M. Wilson Conservation, near Chatham
Rowsom’s Tilbury West Memorial Forest at Rowsom’s Tilbury West Conservation Area, near Tilbury
Tilbury Northside Memorial Forest at Tilbury Northside Park, near Tilbury
McKinlay Woodlands ... A Living Memorial at Merlin Conservation Area, in Merlin
Alternatively, donations may be made to T.R.E.E.S. A Living Memorial through our firm. This initiative, located on Marsh Street in Ridgetown, was developed in partnership with the Municipality of Chatham-Kent.